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Old 01-10-2013, 01:58 PM   #1
ApothecaryBrewing
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So I recently acquired a 40 qt. rectangular cooler and converted it to a mash tun, using FlyGuy's tutorial as a starting point. I used 2 SS braids and linked them together. I have yet to use it and have no idea what sort of efficiency I will get with it.

Just wondering if anything appears extremely wrong to those seasoned veterans out there or if anyone could throw me some tips for my first AG brew.





If anyone is interested or would like to critique my recipe for my first AG batch, that can be found here --> http://hopville.com/recipe/1668749

Thanks!
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Old 01-10-2013, 02:03 PM   #2
Varmintman
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Looks good to me

 
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Old 01-10-2013, 07:10 PM   #3
Stocktonbrew
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The MLT looks good. I dont know what other equipment you have, but i made a cheap 3-tier gravity stand out of 2 by 4s and ply wood and it made the whole process super easy. Good luck on your first run.

 
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:33 PM   #4
wickman6
 
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I use that exact cooler. I have probably 30 brews through it, and its working great. I do find the lid is the weak link when it comes to insulation, but normally I drop only 2 or 3 degrees in an hour. I preheat it however with close to boiling water andthat helps a lot.

Sometimes I mash overnight and I'll wrap the lid up with cling wrap, then cover with blankets.

Good luck with your brew!

Just a tip, have you tested the valve area for leaks? I had a little trouble getting it sealed up, but once I did I haven't had so much as a drop escape.
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Old 01-10-2013, 08:39 PM   #5
CBMbrewer
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My first mlt was very similar. I used two bazooka tubes clamped together and got a pretty consistent 75% efficiency. Should work great
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Old 01-10-2013, 09:07 PM   #6
ApothecaryBrewing
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I have heard mixed reviews on the SS braids but I am hopeful. I am planning on making a pictorial of my first brew in it assuming everything goes well, so I will report back on what kind of numbers I am seeing out of this set up.

Everything up until now has been extract with SG so I am extremely excited to get this brew going and see how things turn out.
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Old 01-10-2013, 10:15 PM   #7
ptakers
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I use SS braids and the nice thing about them is when they're through with their usefulness, you cut off another length and make another one. I got a 10-foot section from the hardware store and have been chopping off 1 foor lengths for a few years now. When it starts to get smashed up, I yank it out and put a new one in.

 
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Old 01-14-2013, 01:01 PM   #8
ApothecaryBrewing
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Ended up brewing my Brown Ale this past weekend. Here is the list of how it went and what could have been better.
  1. Thought I overshot my mash temp, then I overcompensated and ended up mashing at 149F instead of 152F with a mash thickness of maybe 1.5qt/lb ... probably thinner
  2. Batched sparged in 2 stages... seemed to go okay. Will hitting my braid with the paddle effect gravity/efficiency at any point?
  3. Took forever to boil (6.5 gallons on an electric stove)
  4. Boil went ok! Pre-boil OG = 1.046 /// Post-boil OG = 1.050 (Target was 1.055)
  5. Aerated with new O2 aeration kit
  6. First time using dry yeast. Didn't rehydrate, stirred it in instead of just sprinkling and letting it be.
  7. Haven't seen much activity yet, small layer of krausen. Not the super active fermentation I was expecting after using pure O2 and hearing stories about US-05.
  8. Now we wait...
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Old 01-14-2013, 05:20 PM   #9
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Good deal. No hitting the braid shouldn't affect anything at all as long as it stays attached.

It took me a little time to figure out what my strike temp should be in order to hit my target mash temp. I've found about 12 degrees higher than target temp works pretty well in general. I've gotten a bit lazy as well, usually doughing in with 4 gallons instead of worrying too much about mash thickness. Moat of my recipes are 12 pounds of grain roughly, so I get a thickness close to 1.3. It works well for me.

Keep that tun workin!
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Old 01-19-2013, 08:09 PM   #10
ApothecaryBrewing
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SG is 1.012 currently, Gonna be a little dry for a brown ale due to the low mash temp but it tastes great. Can't wait to bottle this up!
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